Crockpot Cube Steak is the ultimate comfort food, offering a fuss-free, flavorful meal where the steak becomes rich and tender, smothered in a delicious gravy. Perfect served over mashed potatoes, white rice, or egg noodles, this easy dish is a family favorite that brings everyone to the table.
This easy cube steak recipe is a comforting and delicious dish that can easily become a favorite in your home. Using a slow cooker ensures that the cube steaks turn out tender and flavorful, making this the perfect meal to enjoy after a long day. The best part? It’s incredibly simple to prepare, and the slow cooker does most of the work for you!
You might be wondering what makes slow cooker cube steak so special. It starts with the cube steak, a tender-cut beef that has been tenderized, giving it its signature cubed appearance. With the help of a crockpot and some tasty ingredients like onion soup mix, beef broth, and cream of mushroom soup, your cube steaks become irresistibly tender, making them the ideal comfort food.
Why You’ll Love Crockpot Cube Steak
- Tender: Slow cooking the cube steak allows the meat to soften and the flavors to blend, resulting in a delicious and tender bite every time. Say goodbye to tough, chewy steak!
- Budget-friendly: Cube steak is a more affordable cut of meat, making it perfect for budget-conscious home chefs.
- Set and forget: Cooking cube steak in a crockpot could not be simpler. Add your ingredients, set the cooking time, and let the crockpot do the work. When you return home after a busy day, a mouthwatering meal will be waiting for you. I love it as an easy weeknight meal.
- Versatile: You can enjoy your crockpot cube steak as a standalone dish and serve it with various sides like sweet potatoes or Italian green beans.
- Customizable: You can easily tweak and modify this easy recipe to your tastes and preferences. Try different seasoning combinations or mixtures of gravy and broth.
- Cubed steak: This tender cut of beef forms the foundation of the dish and ensures a satisfying meal.
- Cream of mushroom soup: This rich soup is a base for the savory sauce that envelops your cube steak.
- Beef broth: Adding beef broth provides extra flavor and helps create a smoother sauce.
- Onion soup mix: This convenient, flavorful mix adds depth to the dish with its blend of onions and various seasonings.
- Brown gravy mix: Enhances the richness of the sauce and helps to give it a delightful, thick consistency.
- Garlic powder: A little bit of garlic powder enhances the overall flavors of this comforting meal.
- Black pepper: Pepper adds a subtle kick to your crockpot cube steak, balancing out the savory notes of the dish.
- Sliced mushrooms: These earthy and tender morsels not only complement the flavors of the sauce but also add a bit of texture to your crockpot dish.
- Fresh parsley: A sprinkle of fresh parsley brightens the dish, adding a burst of color and a refreshing taste.
How to Make Crockpot Cubed Steaks
- Step One: Pour the cream of mushroom soup, beef broth, onion soup mix, gravy mix, and seasonings into the bottom of a crockpot. Stir to combine.
- Step Two: Add the cubed steak into the crockpot and lay them out flat.
- Step Three: Spoon some of the gravy mixture over the steaks. Top with sliced mushrooms.
- Step Four: Cover and cook on LOW for 6 to 8 hours or HIGH for 3 to 4 hours until the cube steaks are tender.
- Step Five: Garnish with chopped parsley before serving, if desired. Serve over egg noodles, white rice, or mashed potatoes.
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- Crockpot: A good quality crockpot or slow cooker is the cornerstone of this dish. It helps cook the cube steak evenly while making it tender and flavorful. There are various crockpot sizes available; choose one that fits your needs.
- Measuring cups and spoons: Accurately measuring ingredients like beef broth and onion soup mix ensures a delicious and well-balanced flavor. Measuring cups and spoons help you get the right proportions.
- Serving utensils: Investing in heat-resistant serving utensils like a slotted spoon or spatula makes it easier to serve the tender cube steak straight from the crockpot without breaking it apart.
What to Serve with Crockpot Cube Steak
- Mashed potatoes: Creamy and smooth, mashed potatoes are a classic side dish that pairs well with the rich flavors of the cube steak and gravy.
- Rice or pasta: Both options work great as a base for serving the cube steak, helping to soak up the delicious gravy.
- Steamed or roasted vegetables: Add a healthy serving of steamed or roasted vegetables like green beans, carrots, or broccoli for a balanced meal.
- Salad: A simple green salad with your favorite dressing can provide a fresh, crisp contrast to the hearty cube steak.
Putting effort into the presentation of your meal can enhance the overall dining experience. Here are a few tips to make your flavorful cube steaks look as delicious as it tastes:
- Plating: Arrange the cube steak over the base of your choice, such as mashed potatoes, rice, or pasta. Pour the savory gravy over the steak, ensuring it drizzles onto the base.
- Garnish: Sprinkle some freshly chopped parsley or chives over the dish, adding a touch of color and subtle flavor enhancement.
- Serve with a side: Arrange your chosen side dish, like steamed vegetables or a fresh salad, on the same plate or in a separate bowl for a well-rounded meal presentation.
Variations and Substitutions
- Meat alternatives: If you’re looking for a different protein option, you can easily swap out cube steak for chicken, pork, or turkey. The slow cooker cooking times may vary, so adjust accordingly.
- Vegetables: Boost your dish’s nutritional value by adding veggies to the mix. Carrots, bell peppers, and green beans can be added directly to the crockpot. You can also sauté them in a frying pan with olive oil and spices such as garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, cumin, oregano, and black pepper for a more robust flavor.
- Mushrooms: Swap out the classic button mushrooms for alternatives like Cremini or Portobello.
- Seasoning twists: Personalize your crockpot cube steak by adjusting the seasoning to your liking. Consider incorporating additional herbs and spices, or experiment with different seasoning blends such as Italian or Cajun. You could also add some Worcestershire sauce for a burst of umami.
- Try another soup: Swap out the cream of mushroom soup for another variety like cream of chicken soup, cream of celery soup, french onion soup, or golden mushroom soup.
Once your crockpot cube steak has cooled down, transfer it to airtight containers or ziplock bags. Store leftover cube steak in the refrigerator for 3 to 4 days. To reheat your cube steak, use a microwave or gently warm it on a stovetop.
Can I Freeze?
Yes, you can freeze your crockpot cube steak!
When freezing your crockpot cube steak, make sure it is cooled down completely before transferring it to an airtight container or freezer bag. This helps prevent the growth of bacteria and ensures the dish’s quality stays intact.
Label and date your container or bag to know exactly how long it has been in the freezer. It’s also a good idea to write down any reheating instructions on the label so you don’t have to search for them later.
Crockpot cube steak can typically be safely stored in the freezer for up to 3 months. However, it’s essential to remember that the longer the dish is in the freezer, the more the quality may diminish. So, aim to enjoy your frozen crockpot cube steak within a month or two for the best taste and texture.
When you’re ready to enjoy your frozen cube steak, it’s important to thaw it safely. The best method is to transfer the dish from the freezer to the refrigerator and let it thaw slowly overnight. Remember not to defrost the cube steak at room temperature, which could cause bacteria growth.
Once your crockpot cube steak is properly thawed, reheat it in a saucepan over low heat until warm, or pop it back into your crockpot for a few hours on low. If the sauce has thickened during freezing, add a little water or broth to thin it out to your desired consistency.
Tips & Tricks
- Ingredient selection: Quality cube steaks are essential for a tasty result. Opt for freshly cut, well-marbled pieces from your local butcher or grocer. Additionally, using a good-quality onion soup mix will enhance the overall flavor of your dish.
- Monitor cooking time: The optimal cooking time for crockpot cube steak is 3 to 4 hours on HIGH or 6-8 hours on LOW. Keep an eye on your slow cooker and adjust cooking times according to your specific appliance. Overcooked cube steak can become dry.
- Thicken the gravy: For those who prefer a thicker gravy, consider whisking in a mixture of cold water and cornstarch during the final 30 minutes of cooking. Two tablespoons of cornstarch per 1/4 cup of cold water should do the trick.
- Thin the gravy: If you find the gravy too thick, you can mix in 1/4 cup more of beef broth or water during the last half hour of cooking time.
- Get creative with sauces: If you want a unique twist on the classic cube steak, try experimenting with various sauces. For instance, you can use the cooking time to create a sweet and savory barbecue sauce by combining ingredients like apple cider vinegar and brown sugar. The slow cooking process will help the sauce develop the perfect consistency.
- Limit the salt: Use low-sodium beef broth or water if you are concerned about sodium.
- Make sure the cube steak isn’t frozen: You can still use frozen cube steak, BUT thaw it first because it may not cook thoroughly if you add it to the crockpot in a frozen state.
Troubleshooting Common Issues
- Lack of Flavor: Sometimes, crockpot cube steak might not taste as flavorful as you’d like. To enhance the taste, try seasoning the cube steaks with salt and pepper and searing them in a cast iron pan for 1 minute per side before placing them in the crockpot. Add extra ingredients like mushrooms, onions, or Lipton onion soup mix to make your dish more savory.
- Dry or Overcooked Steak: If your cube steak ends up too dry or overcooked, it could be due to cooking it at the wrong temperature or for too long. To fix this issue, monitor the cooking time and temperature more closely. Cook cube steak on high for 3 to 4 hours or low for 6 to 8 hours. Additionally, avoid opening the crockpot’s lid, as it can cause heat to escape and lengthen the cooking time.
What is Cube Steak?
Cube steak, also known as minute steak, is a budget-friendly cut of beef that has been tenderized through pounding and cutting. It’s typically derived from the top or bottom round, which are relatively tough cuts of meat. The tenderization process helps improve the texture and makes it easier to cook.
The name “cube steak” comes from the method used to tenderize the meat, which involves a cubing machine. This device punctures the meat, creating a pattern of indentations resembling small cubes. This process not only tenderizes the meat but also allows for quicker cooking times and better absorption of marinades and flavors.
When cooking cube steak, you have several options at your disposal. One popular method is a slow cooker or crockpot, which gives the steak a tender and moist texture. Plus, the slow cooking process results in a rich and flavorful dish that is perfect for a hearty meal.
Choosing the Right Crockpot
Here are a few factors to consider when purchasing a crockpot for your family:
- Size: Crockpots come in various sizes, ranging from small personal models to large ones suitable for big gatherings. Consider your family’s needs and how much food you typically prepare in a slow cooker. A 4-quart crockpot may be ideal for a small family, while a 6- to 8-quart model might be more suitable for larger households or potlucks.
- Features: Some crockpots offer programmable settings that allow you to set cooking times and temperatures, which can provide added convenience. Other models have additional cooking options, such as browning, sautéing, or steaming. Think about the features that would be most useful to you and choose a model that meets your requirements.
- Price: Like with any appliance, there is a wide range of prices for crockpots. Assess your budget and determine how much you will spend on a slow cooker. Remember that more expensive models often come with additional features but may not always be necessary for your needs.
- Ease of Cleaning: Cooking in a crockpot can sometimes make a mess; choosing a model that is easy to clean is essential. Look for slow cookers with removable, dishwasher-safe inserts and lids for fuss-free cleaning.
Slow Cooker Recipes
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Crockpot Cube Steak
- Pour the cream of mushroom soup, beef broth, onion soup mix, gravy mix, and seasonings into the bottom of a crockpot. Stir to combine.
- Add the cubed steak into the crockpot and lay them out flat.
- Spoon some of the gravy over the steaks. Top with sliced mushrooms.
- Cover and cook on LOW for 6 to 8 hours or HIGH for 3 to 4 hours, until the cube steaks are tender.
- Garnish with chopped parsley before serving, if desired. Serve over egg noodles, white rice, or mashed potatoes.